1.18.4 Knowledge Services

Manual Transmittal

July 15, 2014


(1) This transmits revised IRM 1.18.4, Distribution, Knowledge Services.

Material Changes

(1) IRM, Introduction, updated to identify the services and support provided by the Knowledge Services Branch.

(2) IRM, Business Requirement Systems Integration (BRSI), updated section responsibilities.

(3) IRM, Information Technology Budgeting, updated to indicate BRSI manages the IT budget for CAPS and ELITE in M&P in (1) and updated the organizations and online applications in (2).

(4) IRM, Information Technology Program Management, updated to include application development; also changed subsection title to Information Technology Application Development and Program Management.

(5) IRM, CAPS Management; changed subsection title to Computer Assisted Publishing System (CAPS) Management and updated content.

(6) IRM, Application Development and Maintenance, is removed; information on application development added to IRM, Information Technology Application Development and Program Management.

(7) IRM, XML/SGML Support, changed subsection title to eXtensible Markup Language (XML) Support; removed SGML because support is discontinued.

(8) IRM, Distribution System Support, removed and applicable content has been moved to IRM Enterprise Logistics Information Technology (ELITE) Management.

(9) IRM, Unified Work Request (UWR) Submissions Processing; added new subsection.

(10) IRM, IRS.gov Help Desk Comments Processing, revised content and renumbered to IRM BRSI is no longer responsible for processing help desk comments; K&RM is now responsible.

(11) IRM, Electronic Distribution Section (EDS), revised content and changed title to Knowledge and Resources Management (K&RM) Section; formally changed in the Media and Publications (M&P) request for organizational change of June 2011, and the section name is being updated to reflect this change.

(12) IRM, Media and Publication (M&P) Knowledge Management Program; added new subsection.

(13) IRM, Blanket Purchase Agreement (BPA) Support; added new subsection.

(14) IRM, IRS.gov Content Management; added new subsection.

(15) IRM, IRS.gov Help Desk Comments Processing, renumbered; formally IRM

(16) IRM, Media and Publications (M&P) Resource Center SharePoint Site Administration; added new subsection.

(17) IRM, restructured and revised to clarify the services (AMC) provides.

(18) Editorial changes have been made throughout the IRM.

Effect on Other Documents

The IRM 1.18.4 dated February 17, 2009 is superseded.


All IRS Employees

Effective Date


Patricia Evans
Acting Director, Distribution
Wage and Investment Division


  1. Knowledge Services Branch (KS) provides knowledge services, business applications and accessibility support for publishing and distribution programs. Knowledge Services Branch works closely with IRS Information Technology (IT) to make sure that all publishing and distribution electronic systems and applications function to provide the highest quality electronic products and services available. There are three sections in the Knowledge Services Branch:

    1. Business Requirements Systems Integration (BRSI)

    2. Knowledge and Resources Management (K&RM)

    3. Alternative Media Center (AMC)

Business Requirements Systems Integration (BRSI)

  1. BRSI section responsibilities include:

    • Information Technology Budgeting

    • Information Technology Application Development and Program Management

    • Computer Assisted Publishing System (CAPS) Management

    • Enterprise Logistics Information Technology (ELITE) Management

    • eXtensible Markup Language (XML) Support

    • Unified Work Requests (UWR) Submission Processing

Information Technology Budgeting
  1. BRSI analysts are responsible for the management of the IT budget for CAPS and ELITE in the Media and Publications (M&P) organization. In this capacity they:

    1. Gather and monitor IT requirements

    2. Meet with management to review IT requirements and budget

    3. Work with appropriate IT organizations, Business Systems Planning (BSP) and Division technology advisors to ensure that IT requirements and budget needs are properly communicated and that funds are available for annual maintenance costs and new purchases

  2. They work closely with members of other organizations (e.g., Procurement, Accounting, IT) to resolve IT issues and problems using a combination of spreadsheets and online applications (including the IT Project Tracking System (PTS), Work Request Management System (WRMS), IPS, and the Invoice Processing Platform (IPP) to ensure requirements are funded and requisitions are processed timely.

Information Technology Application Development and Program Management
  1. BRSI analysts are responsible for providing IT solutions to serve the business needs of the M&P user community. They collaborate with business representatives to collect data and manage business, functional and technical requirements. The analysts identify and resolve application issues and monitor the progress of all application development. The CAPS M&P IT Request and Work Request systems are used as communication tools to facilitate these tasks.

  2. BRSI analysts are responsible for the coordination of application software procurements for the M&P organization, including new software and services, and ongoing maintenance contracts for existing components. UWRs detailing necessary updates are submitted to IT via WRMS for tracking and coordination purposes. BRSI analysts create requisitions in the Integrated Procurement System (IPS) and prepare any required supporting documents.

  3. BRSI participates in and provides oversight for Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA) activities for GSS-37 (CAPS-I) and ELITE. This includes facilitating meetings with various IT business units, CyberSecurity, system development and test team members for the Security Assessment and Authorization certification process. BRSI ensures compliance with FISMA requirements by:

    1. Planning for system security

    2. Reviewing and monitoring the security controls on a regular basis

    3. Participating in system security testing annually

    4. Developing and maintaining action plans for remediation of security weaknesses

Computer Assisted Publishing System (CAPS) Management
  1. CAPS hosts locally-developed and Commercial Off-The-Shelf (COTS) software applications which in turn support the design, composition, requisitioning, printing procurement and job tracking for the entire complement of IRS published products. These include the Core Repository of Published Products (CROPP), the http://www.publish.no.irs.gov web site and "Page 1" which is a group of M&P internal web pages.

  2. BRSI analysts are responsible for the management of CAPS, including database and application software maintenance and administration. Operational support for CAPS hardware and system infrastructure software (including installation, upgrade and maintenance, security administration and monitoring) is provided by IT Enterprise Operations.

  3. Most of the technical work on CAPS is performed by contracted staff. BRSI contracting officer’s representatives (CORs) provide contract support and oversight for the work performed.

Enterprise Logistics Information Technology (ELITE) Management
  1. BRSI analysts are responsible for the management of ELITE. Distribution employees use ELITE to manage distribution programs, forecast printed products and manage National Distribution Center operations. Customer Accounts (CAS) employees enter orders into a separate ELITE application.

  2. BRSI analysts work with other Distribution employees to develop ELITE requirements and manage its Total Information Processing Support Services contract. Contractors perform software maintenance, interpret requirements and program changes.

eXtensible Markup Language (XML) Support
  1. Through contracted staff, BRSI provides XML authoring and/or composition support for a wide range of IRS published products, including tax forms instructions, taxpayer information publications, the Internal Revenue Manual (IRM), the Internal Revenue Bulletin (IRB), tax topics and revenue procedures. This includes help desk support for XML authors servicewide who use Arbortext Editor software.

Unified Work Requests (UWR) Submissions Processing
  1. BRSI analysts manage UWR submissions from M&P to the IT organization by:

    • Monitoring employees' access and permissions

    • Validating completeness of submissions

    • Providing UWR assistance to M&P initiators

    • Tracking the status of submissions to ensure timely responses are provided to IT Demand Management

Knowledge and Resources Management Section (K&RM)

  1. K&RM section responsibilities include:

    • M&P Knowledge Management Program

    • Blanket Purchase Agreement (BPA) Support

    • IRS.gov Content Management

    • IRS.gov Help Desk Comments Processing

    • M&P Resource Center SharePoint Site Administration

Media and Publication (M&P) Knowledge Management Program
  1. The goal of the program is to incorporate the principles of knowledge retention, knowledge management, and knowledge sharing into the M&P administrative and production framework to leverage, share and transfer the wealth of knowledge of M&P employees to their successors, thus aiding the future success of the M&P mission.

  2. K&RM designs, develops, tests, implements and promotes tools to foster knowledge collection and knowledge sharing. The tools include:

    • After-action reviews

    • Knowledge and information sharing templates

    • Publicly available and searchable knowledge repositories

    • Process maps and lessons learned articles

    • Other tools derived from private industry and federal government best practices

  3. K&RM uses knowledge management expertise to provide M&P with tools to promote a knowledge sharing environment and assists other M&P functions by:

    1. Facilitating after-action reviews

    2. Collecting lessons learned

    3. Interviewing management-selected current and departing employees

    4. Developing process maps

    5. Training new M&P employees on the tools and techniques of Knowledge Management (KM)

    6. Consulting on KM activities throughout the organization

    7. Researching and implementing other techniques as appropriate

  4. K&RM solicits and analyzes submissions from M&P employees for knowledge sharing topics, derives and drafts knowledge articles for sharing on the M&P knowledge management web site, and provides expertise and assistance regarding social collaboration.

Blanket Purchase Agreement (BPA) Support
  1. K&RM analysts provide support for the BPA for non-personal services to assist M&P in design, preparation, development, production, maintenance, and distribution of digital tax media and information. The analysts maintain communication between Procurement and contractors. They review, request approval, and pay invoices in a timely manner.

  2. K&RM analysts organize, direct and coordinate production and distribution of contract support activities. This includes formulating and reviewing project feasibility studies, determining costs and ensuring conformance to work standards. They also review the technical requirements and the schedule of each project and coordinate with several project managers, customers and contractors.

IRS.gov Content Management
  1. K&RM analysts administer web content on IRS.gov for Distribution at http://www.irs.gov/formspubs/index/index.html and use a content management application in their roles. Working with creators/publishers and page stewards across the division, analysts manage distribution content to ensure the information is technically correct, remains current and is updated timely or removed as appropriate. They also work with the Online Services web analysts and Content Area Administrators from other business units as needed to revise or remove content. Detailed guidelines, procedures, roles, and responsibilities for Wage and Investment (W&I) internet content management are found in IRM 11.55.1, Internet Content Publishing Process (ICPP) Management Document.

IRS.gov Help Desk Comments Processing
  1. K&RM is responsible for providing a point-of-contact (POC) for the W&I Publishing and Distribution functions for questions relating to content pages on IRS.gov. A W&I point of contact listing can be found on W&I's http://win.web.irs.gov/icp/wi_icp.htm page.

  2. Any IRS.gov web site user can submit an inquiry about the web site by email, telephone call, or web chat to the IRS.gov Help Desk (Help Desk). An inquiry can be a question, problem or comment regarding the web content and IRS programs. The IRS.gov Help Desk answers most of the inquiries received from the public within 24 hours of being contacted.

  3. When an inquiry is submitted to the Help Desk, it is checked against a repository of known issues, e.g., pre-recorded (pre-determined) responses and Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs). Inquiries that cannot be addressed by the Help Desk are escalated to IRS.gov POC.

  4. If the inquiry falls within W&I purview, it is sent to the W&I POC. The POC is asked to respond to Help Desk emails.


    Tax account related inquiries that will require interpretation of tax laws and procedures are forwarded to the appropriate IRS function for response.

    1. The POC determines which subject matter expert (SME) within W&I would be the most appropriate party to answer the questions and designate a response time frame

    2. The Help Desk determines the priority and designates a response time frame

    3. The W&I POC forwards the email to SME for response

    4. The SME answers the inquiry and sends an email back to the POC who formats the response and sends it to the Help Desk with a copy to the W&I organization mailbox

    5. The W&I POC keeps a copy of the email in the personal folder

Media and Publication (M&P) Resource Center
SharePoint Site Administration
  1. K&RM section has overall responsibility for the https://organization.ds.irsnet.gov/sites/WI-Care-MP/default.aspx, but administers it in collaboration with site administrators in M&P business units. This SharePoint web site collection provides collaborative and repository functionality to all business units in M&P. The site collection is hosted on SharePoint servers maintained by IT. IT manages the SharePoint infrastructure, provides governance policies and standards, and resolves application issues.

  2. K&RM leads a matrix team of SharePoint site administrators consisting of one or more employees from the Distribution, Publishing, and Tax Forms and Publications. This matrix team recommends and implements overall site policies and enforces adherence to IRS SharePoint and web standards. Each site administrator is responsible for sub sites, web content, and document libraries within their organizational and program boundaries and K&RM site collection administrator retains responsibility for the home page and other cross organizational boundaries.

  3. Administration responsibilities include:

    1. Creating, populating, and maintaining user groups

    2. Managing user access rights (e.g., granting and revoking user inclusion in policy groups during temporary assignments and revoking access rights for separated employees)

    3. Collecting, analyzing, and reporting on web statistics

    4. Troubleshooting and resolving user issues and elevating to the IT Help Desk when appropriate

    5. Responding quickly to website outages and working with IT to restore web access

    6. Analyzing and responding to user requests for SharePoint objects such as sub sites, custom lists, and document libraries

    7. Probing and resolving broken hyperlinks

    8. Providing and controlling access to the DSTEST development and test environment

    9. Analyzing, testing, approving, and launching custom web functionality

    10. Responding to inquiries directed to the matrix team's email box; mail to wi.mp.sharepoint.admin@irs.gov

    11. Applying and managing appropriate site features to address user business requirements (SharePoint site settings)

  4. Content responsibilities include:

    1. Soliciting or developing fresh content for the announcements on the M&P Resource Center home page

    2. Developing and managing content for the main site, collaborating with the Planning and Analysis Branch of M&P

    3. Developing and managing content for Career Services site, collaborating with the employment specialists in the Strategic Planning and Analysis offices of each division

    4. Developing and managing content for specialized content on other M&P sub sites that cross organizational boundaries

    5. Developing and maintaining key word search for the site collection

  5. The site collection administrator, currently a K&RM section employee has duties in addition to the content and administration duties listed earlier:

    1. Represents M&P on IRS SharePoint governance forums

    2. Serves as liaison to W&I SharePoint nonexecutive councils

    3. Maintains web site collection registration

    4. Manages site collection quotas and obtains web resources from IT as appropriate

    5. Maintains overall site design to preserve standardization, usability and consistency throughout the collection

    6. Collects, analyzes and reports on overall web usage and other statistics

    7. Ensure site administrators have appropriate training in SharePoint and Section 508 accessibility issues and provides coaching and assistance

Alternative Media Center (AMC)

  1. The AMC provides alternative media resources to IRS employees through publishing support for format selection, acquisition, production and dissemination of IRS products required in accessible file formats. Currently there are over 1,500 cataloged products and other non-cataloged products in traditional formats such as:

    • Braille

    • Large print

    • Accessible PDF

    • HTML

    • ASCII text

    • e-book formats

  2. Staff produces alternative media through:

    • Government Printing Office contracts

    • In-house production facility

    • In-house translation/conversion

  3. All accessible electronic content is uploaded to the CROPP and can be downloaded through the http://www.publish.no.irs.gov web page. File management is performed for these products on various systems and applications including ELITE, Account Management Services and the Electronic Status Notice to ensure uninterrupted distribution of accessible media through mainstream channels. The scope of delivery includes up to 54 million taxpayers and 10,000 IRS employees who have a disability.

  4. AMC operates an IRS owned production facility using high-speed embossers and printers to process Braille and large print orders. Taxpayers order hard copy media through all the conventional ordering channels, and IRS employees can place orders directly through the AMC using the http://caps-as.enterprise.irs.gov/osms/app or by taking part in the annual survey for accessible media. The facility operates "on-demand" using electronic files to produce orders on real time basis.

  5. AMC provides web services and manages an intranet site at http://amc.enterprise.irs.gov/ for IRS employees to order accessible media, download products and get guidance and support. Web services are provided to taxpayers on the accessibility pages on IRS.gov at http://www.irs.gov/uac/Accessible-IRS-Tax-Products. AMC program analysts are trained as page stewards and creators/publishers to post accessible media and manage all content on these pages to ensure accurate and current information is available.

  6. AMC Help Desk service is available to all IRS employees via an organizational email account. IRS employees can ask questions, place orders for alternative media, or get support for making electronic media accessible. All incoming requests are put into a tracking system and assigned to the appropriate analyst. Reports are generated to monitor workload.

  7. AMC builds and strengthens partnerships with disability advocacy groups and organizations that support people with disabilities to tailor service approaches and to connect with these taxpayers segments to better understand their needs and preferences.